Woman sitting in the cab of a semi truck

If you think you have the qualities of a good truck driver, you might want to start a new career. Before you get started, reviewing some tips for new truck drivers is essential. At Morristown Express, we want you to be successful; that’s why we offer some top advice for new truck drivers.

Rookie Trucker Safety Tips

What’s essential for new truck drivers to learn? We’ve put together a few tips for you to consider as a rookie trucker.

GOAL (Get Out and Look)

Don’t just assume your truck is suitable for transporting your load. It’s critical to perform regular safety inspections, especially before you hit the road. However, you should also check the truck and trailer at the first sign there could be something wrong.

Make Sure you Rest Appropriately

It can be hard to sleep on the road at first. If you aren’t going to make it home at night, make sure you bring comfortable pillows and blankets for the road. You might find that a white noise machine helps block unnecessary sounds so that you can get the best night of sleep possible. If you get tired during your route, stop, and take a power nap.

Maintain Safe Distance with Surrounding Vehicles

Remember how big your rig is. When traveling with vehicles all around you, leaving plenty of room for safe stopping and maneuvering is critical. It’s best to back up away from others whenever possible.

Pay Attention to Road Signs

It can be easy to miss critical traffic signs when you travel to a new area. Be sure to pay attention and follow any road signs you see.

Be Mindful of Weather Conditions

Before you head out on the road, check the weather for your route. Along the way, you should also double-check what’s going on if it looks like bad weather might hit. Have a game plan if the weather becomes dangerous.

Do’s and Don’ts for Life as a New Trucker

Do: Pull your truck ahead when you are finished fueling
Don’t: Leave your truck waiting in the fuel line, whether you are next in line or done fueling.

Do: Maintain a healthy lifestyle filled with regular exercise and quality food.
Don’t: Eat junk food and remain sedentary.

Do: Remain respectful and professional with your customers, other trucks, and dispatchers.
Don’t: Take on the behavior of others around you. They might just be having a rough day, and they could use a friendly smile.

New Truck Driver Pay

How much do new truck drivers make? The salary and compensation you receive are contingent on several factors, such as your experience and the level of benefits you choose. To better understand your potential salary, read our blog “Entry-Level CDL Jobs: What To Expect”.

Get the Right Class of CDL for You

There are multiple ways to become a new truck driver. You can get a Class A, Class B, or Class C license. There are differences between each option, so it’s important to do your research before you start. Most experienced drivers prefer to have a Class A CDL to get regular tractor-trailer jobs.

Cab Essentials for New Truck Drivers

You don’t have a lot of room in your cab for everything that you want to bring, but some things are complete essentials. Here are a few items you don’t want to leave home without.

  • Shower shoes
  • Blankets/pillows for sleep
  • Personal care items – toothpaste, toothbrush, shampoo, body wash, and deodorant
  • Emergency container for bathroom use/toilet paper
  • Earplugs
  • Work gloves/jacket
  • Flashlight
  • Extra water
  • Cell phone holder for the dash
  • Nonperishable food
  • Portable cooking gear
  • Cleaning supplies
  • First aid kit
  • Waterproof boots

As you continue driving, you will find that you might need some other gear on a regular basis. Keep a master list that helps you pack before you hit the road.

Advice for New Truck Drivers

  1. Get to know everyone you will be working for, including the dispatcher, vendors, and fellow drivers.
  2. Know what qualities make a good driver.
  3. Manage your schedule well.
  4. Take care of your body by eating well, exercising regularly, and getting enough sleep.
  5. Maintain a positive attitude, even when the journey becomes rough because it will.

Join Morristown Express!

It’s never easy to become a new truck driver, but our advice should set you off on the right foot. At Morristown Express, we believe in setting our drivers up for success. That’s why we are always available to work with our drivers for any needs that arise. If you are a new driver, we encourage you to apply for a truck driving job today. We offer superior pay and a competitive benefits package that blows away the competition. Become a part of our team today.